With the global financial markets in turmoil, this year's World Economic Forum event in Switzerland couldn't have come at a better time. Look for global leaders to give us an idea of what's on tap over the next 12 months. The event kicks off tomorrow (January 23) with a mega-brainstorming session, in which global leaders and other luminaries attempt to "identify the most pressing threat to growth and prioritize a plan of action." Over the next 4-5 days, leaders will discuss the innovative ideas that could change the world. Interestingly, the overarching theme of this year's Davos event is The Power of Collaborative Innovation:
"Looking to the future, it becomes readily apparent that complexity, competing interests and scarce resources remain the greatest obstacles to progress on the global agenda in the absence of greater leadership and global stewardship. It is in this challenging context that the World Economic Forum will highlight The Power of Collaborative Innovation as the principal theme for the Annual Meeting 2008 in Davos.
A "shifting power equation" was the framework in which the global agenda was discussed in Davos at the beginning of 2007. As we look towards 2008, this shift will continue to influence the strategies of business, government and other stakeholders in the world economy. But closer examination of the international environment also reveals that leadership vacuums are beginning to emerge on a wide range of critical issues looming on the horizon. Moreover, a paradox has emerged in our networked world where knowledge is ubiquitous and change is rapid, but the absence of a common vision and agenda ensures that the status quo will be maintained with respect to major global challenges. The focus on collaboration and innovation underscores the opportunity to leverage the Forum’s multi-stakeholder model so that platforms can be built for like-minded communities to initiate necessary changes together."
This theme of Collaborative Innovation will be presented against the backdrop of five different areas: business, economics & finance, geopolitics, science & technology, and values & society. There's even a Davos YouTube site, in which up-and-coming thought leaders have already posted their videos of how to make the world a better place.
[image: Davos 2007]